Dual Camera iPhone 7 Plus Could Offer 'DSLR-Like' Quality, 3D Depth Mapping

Earlier today, reputable KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said the iPhone 7 Plus will likely have a dual-lens camera system based on technology Apple acquired from LinX Imaging. The new hardware could lead to some significant improvements in camera quality on Apple's next flagship smartphone.

LinX's multi-aperture cameras pack impressive image quality in a smaller size than single aperture cameras, meaning the iPhone 7 Plus may lack a protruding camera lens and be able to take SLR-quality photos — think Canon or Nikon. The camera modules are also capable of very interesting technology called 3D depth mapping and more.

We previously provided an in-depth look at LinX's camera modules after Apple acquired the company, but it is worth recapping some of the major advantages of their technology, given today's iPhone 7 Plus rumor.

Noise Reduction

The images captured by the LinX camera are brighter and clearer, with significantly reduced noise levels, compared to smartphone cameras. Available detail when zoomed into a photo was also much greater, as can be seen in the comparison below. View this PDF for more side-by-side image comparisons.

linxlownoise

Improved Indoor Photos

In the photo below, the image was taken in mid-levels of light, at approximately 40 to 50 lux, similar to a decently well-lit room in a house or restaurant. The LinX sensor let in more light than the iPhone 5 or the Samsung Galaxy S4, for a photo that is clearer and sharper with less noise.

indoor40luxlightinglinx

Improved Low Light Photos

LinX technology is able to significantly improve low light performance by using multiple channels to increase the sensitivity of the camera for better detail. It also keeps exposure times short to cut down on the motion blurring that can impact photo quality in conditions where lighting is not optimal.

linxlowlighting1lux
LinX technology doesn't have to compromise between pixel size and resolution, as it can use small pixels but still let in adequate amounts of light.

3D Depth Mapping

linxpointmapping
LinX's multi-aperture cameras can create detailed depth maps of objects. With depth information on a per-pixel basis along with RGB information, LinX cameras can create 3D point clouds of objects from a single frame or a complete 3D model by combining several frames captured from different angles.

3D depth mapping has a number of useful applications, including 3D scanning of objects, sizing of objects, background removal and replacement and gesture recognition. The depth maps also allow for improved refocusing; by knowing the depth at every pixel, the feature allows for a synthetic blur to be applied that emulates a shallow depth.

Benefits Overview


- Better color accuracy and uniformity
- HDR - higher dynamic range
- UHDR - ultra high dynamic range
- Low noise levels
- Higher resolution

- Low module costs
- No Autofocus for modules of up to 20MP
- Zero shutter lag
- Small size allows for slim devices and edge-to-edge displays

Read A Look at LinX Camera Technology for more details about the dual camera systems.

Tag: cameras

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
61 months ago
If I see the words "SLR[-like] quality" and "phone" in one sentence one more time...

That's some of the biggest PR bull ever and most of the media outlets chime right in.

Glassed Silver:mac
Score: 50 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago
Why do I need to get a phone that's way too big for me in order to get the improved camera?
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago

So friggin annoying...why are they comparing to the 5s instead of the a new 6s. Probably because there is not much of a noticeable difference.

Because these PDFs were made at the time when iPhone 5S was the newest model and right before Apple bought the company out. Since Apple bought the company, you can bet no further public information is allowed.

And iPhone 6s is definitely worse than iPhone 5S in noise reduction quality IMO.

Source: http://snapsnapsnap.photos/iphone-6s-camera-comparison/
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago
Now if the laws of physics could enable us to have optical zoom the same as a 400mm lens on a phone, I'd be set.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago
oh course it looks better...comparing it to an iPhone 5 and 5s :rolleyes:
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago

If I see the words "SLR[-like] quality" and "phone" in one sentence one more time...

That some of the biggest PR bull ever and most of the media outlets chime right in.

The best part is when the idiots who fall for that PR see my pictures (shot with a D90 from 2008) and ask me where I got them printed because they came out so much sharper than their iPhone prints.

But then you have people in the photo forum here who insist their iPhone is as good as an SLR and show side-by-side pics under ideal lighting to prove it. When you suggest they try shooting in dimmer light or compare crops so you can really see sharpness at print resolution, they never seem to notice those posts.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iOS 14 Widgets Offer iPhone Users Creative Home Screen Ideas

Sunday September 20, 2020 8:43 pm PDT by
Updated on September 22nd with hands on video. In iOS 14, Apple introduced ‌the concept of Home Screen‌ widgets, which provide information from apps at a glance. Widgets can be pinned to the Home Screen in various spots and sizes, allowing for many different layouts. Despite the relative lack of...

iPhone 12 Lineup Rumored to Be Named 'iPhone 12 mini,' 'iPhone 12,' 'iPhone 12 Pro,' and 'iPhone 12 Pro Max'

Monday September 21, 2020 5:24 am PDT by
Leaker known as "L0vetodream" has today shared the alleged naming for the upcoming iPhone 12 lineup on Twitter. The tweet proposes that the upcoming iPhone 12 models will be titled "iPhone 12 mini," "iPhone 12," "iPhone 12 Pro," and "iPhone 12 Pro Max." The names likely correspond to the three expected sizes of iPhone 12, with the 5.4-inch model being the iPhone 12 mini, the 6.7-inch model ...

PSA: New Apple Watch Owners Have to Return Entire Device for Ill-Fitting Solo Loop or Braided Solo Loop

Monday September 21, 2020 3:26 pm PDT by
With the Apple Watch Series 6, Apple introduced two new band options, the Solo Loop and the Braided Solo Loop. These new bands are unique because they have no clasps, buckles, or other fasteners, and instead use a stretch design to allow them to pull onto the wrist over the hand. Because these bands are not adjustable, Apple sells each one in nine different sizes to make sure each person...

Apple Releases First Public Betas of iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 With New Shazam Control Center Options

Monday September 21, 2020 10:34 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the first public betas of upcoming iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 updates to its public beta testing group, a few days after seeding the first betas to developers and a little less than a week after releasing the iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 updates. Public beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta testing program can download the iOS and iPadOS‌ 14.2 updates over the air after ...

Kuo: Apple to Accelerate Adoption of Mini-LED Displays in iPad and Mac Notebook Lineups

Sunday September 20, 2020 10:00 pm PDT by
Increased competition among Apple's suppliers for mini-LED display chips will accelerate the company's adoption of the advanced technology in its iPad and MacBook lineups, according to a new research note from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo seen by MacRumors. Kuo says that while Epistar had been predicted to be the exclusive supplier of mini-LED chips for Apple products in 2021, Sanan Optoelectronics...

AirPods Studio Rumored to Come With U1 Chip, Ultra-Wideband Said to Be Vital to Future Apple Ecosystem

Sunday September 20, 2020 6:17 am PDT by
Proven leaker known as "L0vetodream" has today shared a range of information about the ultra-wideband U1 chip in Apple's upcoming AirTags item trackers and AirPods Studio headphones. The first of a series of tweets shared today simply stated that AirPods Studio will contain an ultra-wideband U1 chip. It seems likely that the U1 chip would be used in AirPods Studio to track the location of...

AT&T Already Working on 6G, Says 5G iPhones Might Not Be 'Massive Event' Due to Economic Uncertainty

Monday September 21, 2020 10:05 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming launch of 5G iPhones might not be a "massive event" due to economic uncertainty amid the global health crisis, AT&T Communications CEO Jeff McElfresh said in a paywalled interview published by CNBC. "I do believe that you will see many of the iPhone subscribers move to upgrade to the device," said McElfresh. "But I wouldn't forecast that it's going to be a massive event. I...

Microsoft Announces Outlook for Mac Redesign, Improvements to iOS and watchOS Apps

Tuesday September 22, 2020 8:56 am PDT by
Microsoft has today announced plans to bring a new design to its Outlook for Mac app along with several other improvements and features for Outlook on iOS and watchOS. In preparation for the public release of macOS Big Sur, Microsoft has been testing a new design for Outlook on Mac. The design includes Microsoft's Fluent icons and several design cues from Big Sur such as rounded corners....

iOS 14 Adoption Surpasses 25% Across iPhone and iPad Five Days After Release

Monday September 21, 2020 9:06 am PDT by
Five days after Apple released iOS 14, adoption of the software update has reached approximately 26 percent of active iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch devices, according to mobile analytics company Mixpanel. This includes iPadOS 14. iOS 14 adoption appears to be outpacing iOS 13, which was installed on approximately 20 percent of active devices one week after its release last year, according to...

When Will the iPhone 12 Launch? Here's What We Know

Wednesday September 16, 2020 6:12 am PDT by
Yesterday's "Time Flies" Apple event saw the release of the Apple Watch Series 6, Apple Watch SE, iPad 8, and iPad Air 4, but no new iPhone models. Rumors before the event strongly alleged that it would not see the unveiling of new iPhones, with many reports pointing to an October launch. The lack of new iPhone models yesterday seems to confirm that the iPhone 12 lineup will not appear...